Sorry for any grammatical errors, but here’s my take.
The state of judging in the US circuit is in poor hands because there is a lack of due dilligence from certain competitions to actually invest in the one thing that matters at a “competition”, and dancers who are entitled now more than ever based on “resumes” lol. Judging used to be merit based, what you did mattered for something. Set creation, design, placings* and being a leader of a placing set which presented intricacy balancing all elements of a rubric anywhere. Not to mention being able to not only articulate your point of view, but to back it up with substantial evidence. The system of selection is yes broken to a certain extent, but it isn’t due to the lack of presence to something such as UBJ, it’s certain competitions pretty much thinking either with their pockets or lack of experience from a board prespective. It is sad to hear what has been going on with teams as of recent, lol but getting dicked over at competitions, or feeling like your getting dicked over due to a lack of transparency has been happening since time. Being vocal about it is great but in all honesty, the way to fix this is by, one holding competitions responsible for who they’re selecting, and selecting to go to competitions based on having a discussion that you are dealing with adequate organizers, before the fact.
Ideally, it would be wonderful to know what a judging lineup is, before you apply to a competition. How many times have you spoken to an organizers with the discussion going “ Well we’re almost there, we’re just working on this one last judge...”, just a few weeks before the competition? Now this is tough for competitions I understand, but a competition is like a good restaurant in my opinion, if things are working behind the scenes in the kitchen, service will follow. Make sure your prep is done accordingly so that all people have to do, is be put into position, and you can have a beautiful night.
In regard to the inadequacy of judging recently, people nowadays are also willing to get to competitions on their own budgets which is opening doors for anybody to apply and just fly out for the sake of a judging. And it should go without saying, you should be a good dancer, teammate, captain or coach, before you even get considered for judging at a competition. And this shouldn’t just be from a “Google Form”, that your getting this information. Stop listening to the support of judges through social media influencers, and just other names on a referenced list. How about interview the individual and reference other credible individuals in the circuit who want to see it keep giving back to our community so we can get it right?
I appreciate everybody responding on this thread as it will get better, this is cyclical, every few years some shit happens and teams are up in arms about “Judging reform in NA”. Crappy comps shouldn’t be the reason you stop doing what you do, but on the team side, I recommend not being surprised when judgment or placings happen without trying everything before that Saturday or Sunday night of the comp to get it right.
Stay driven, keep positive, have a voice.
Over & Out